Bicycle Motocross riding, most commonly known as BMX riding, has been gaining popularity over the last few years. BMX riding is a cycling sport where riders of all ages engage in races, obstacle courses and perform tricks on their BMX bicycles.
Many old riders have been re-entering the world of BMX, and many young people are coming into the scene as they discover the joy of riding BMX. However, as many people will find at the beginning of their BMX journey, learning to ride can be complicated and intimidating.
Still, there are some things you can do to help yourself progress your BMX riding skills. Here are ten tips for beginners getting started with BMX.
Protect Your Head
BMX riding may be fun, but there’s always the risk of hurting yourself if you’re not careful. Hence, the essential safety precautions shouldn’t be ignored like in all other sports.
Frequent falls are normal with BMX riding, and it’s essential to protect your head. Always wear a helmet. If you’re a parent whose kids have decided to try BMX, it’s in your best interest to ensure the kids’ helmets are protective and secure.
Get A Bike That Fits You
The size of your BMX frame can make a difference in your comfort and safety while riding. Amongst everything to look for when buying a bike, you’ll want to make sure the frame suits you.
The most common size is around 20 inches, but you may want something shorter or longer depending on height and personal preference. People often overlook this factor when shopping for a new BMX. Hence, it’s best to visit a BMX store and get fitted for a bike that suits you.
Learn The Basics Before Progressing
As tempting as it may be to start by trying all the cool tricks and big jumps you see from other riders, securing a good foundation is part of every rider’s journey. Of course, nobody will stop you if you start by trying the big tricks.
Still, beware that trying more advanced maneuvers when you aren’t yet fully comfortable and in control of your BMX may cause complications and accidents. Learn basic control and beginner tricks, like manuals and fakies, before moving to bigger things.
Know Some Bike Maintenance
Knowing how to fix it will benefit all the falls your bike is likely to endure. Bike maintenance isn’t that difficult, so definitely learn it.
A great way to know your BMX is to learn how to assemble it from the ground up. It may be a good idea to carry a few basic tools with you when you’re out riding BMX.
Keep The Brakes On
Read this before you dismiss it. Yes, many experienced BMX riders will remove the brakes from their bike. That said, beginners should still consider riding with brakes when they’re just starting.
Being able to brake at any time can save you a bulk of falls and slips from losing control of the bike. Plus, many tricks can only be performed with brakes. So, consider keeping them on for the first few months.
Identify Your Dominant Foot
Understanding your dominant foot may make learning new tricks and maneuvers easier. Ride around for a bit, and you’ll eventually notice which foot you tend to keep in front. That’s most likely your dominant foot.
For example, if you keep your right foot forward, it’ll likely be more comfortable to do spins to the left (away from the front foot). It would be best to research and ask around. That said, this tip is more a guide than a rule, and you should do what you find most comfortable.
Ride In Different Places
Finding a track, course, or park to ride BMX in is great, but it’s also fun to switch it up from time to time. If you can, try to find several different places to ride and practice (be sure you’re allowed to ride there).
Not only is it fun, but riding in different areas and on various terrains will boost your experience and may help you progress faster.
Be Prepared To Fall
Don’t be afraid to fall; it’ll only hold you back. Falling hard and falling often is part of riding BMX.
The chances are that you’ll fall countless times when learning a trick before getting it right. In this sport, you can’t progress without taking a few knocks. Again, make sure your helmet is good because you may fall more than you ride for the first while.
Learn From Others
Learning resources are more accessible than they’ve ever been. Learn and take advice from people with more experience. Friends, YouTube, and even BMX blogs are great places to learn from others’ experiences.
After reading everything else on this list, don’t forget that the most important part of the sport is to have fun while doing it! BMX is a great way to make friends, socialize, and form good bonds!
Whether you’re racing or tricking competitively, riding for yourself, or riding with friends, BMX riding is an excellent and versatile sport. Hopefully, the ten tips listed here have helped you find your starting ground as a beginner.
To sum everything up, remember to take proper safety precautions, learn progressively, shop for the right bike if you can, and be mindful about how and where you’re riding. Most importantly, remember to have fun while you’re doing it. Keep up with consistent practice, and you’ll soon see yourself improving and on your way to becoming a BMX master!